Friday, October 24, 2014

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NY1 For You: Queens Homeowners Stuck With Costly Water Main Repairs

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A water main break in one Queens neighborhood has been a draining experience for homeowners who say they shouldn't have to pay for the fault of National Grid which they believe caused the break when drilling to put in new gas lines. Susan Jhun filed the following report.

"I don't think it's right and I don't think it's fair,” said Jamaica homeowner Alvin Patterson.

There has been a drought for Queens homeowner Patterson, who lost water back in May at the same time National Grid was laying down new gas pipes.

"They have very old water pipes in the neighborhood and once you start doing with the sledgehammer it shakes everything lose,” said Patterson.

Patterson says he's been living here for twelve years and never had a problem with the water main until National Grid started drilling at which time coincidentally the main broke.

Homeowners say it's a double whammy. First, they have their water cut off then they're hit with an unfair financial burden.

"After that, I was served with a three day notice claiming that if I don't fix the water main that they will cut off my water,” said homeowner Jillian Alfred.

"I do not have $4,000 to fix this,” said Patterson.

NY1 contacted National Grid and a spokeswoman said the company's initial investigation found that it's work was not in proximity to the water line, since they were at least five feet apart. She went on to say National Grid does not believe there's any correlation.

Homeowners say that’s nonsense. They now have to figure out a way to foot the bill. In Alfred's case, she's applied for a loan that she'll have to pay back with interest just to cover the cost.

Patterson, who recently lost his wife is planning on moving.

"I just lost my wife three weeks ago, I can't even mourn,” said Patterson.

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